19/08/2012 17:56

Milne bay students told to overcome cultural hindrances

(Madang, 18 August 2012) “Birth, marriage, death, gardening… everything was determined by magic powers and behaviors in traditional Milne Bay culture. Then the Churches came to our villages and most of this was removed”, said Ephraim Yalebaguyau, retired Principal of Madang Technical College. He was speaking at the Milne Bay day organized by the Divine Word University students from the PNG easternmost province on Saturday 19 August. And he partially blamed the slow progress in development on rivalry and jealousy when it comes to the enhancement of personal and family life conditions; “It is a fact that, in some areas, anyone who puts up a permanent house or building of any sort, after a few weeks is dead”. He appealed to the students “to leave this behind”. “We need to look at the future – said Divine Word University Chaplain Fr. Giorgio Licini PIME, previously assigned to Milne Bay -. Whatever the past was, it is not going to come back. After the impact of Christianity and the modern world, Milne Bay and Papua New Guinea are not going to be the same again. It is for us to build a new time based on whatever good we can retain from the past, on our present human resources and our respect for God and creation as truly religious individuals”.  Deputy governor for Milne Bay James Rubeni, who happened to be in Madang for family reasons, highlighted the projects recently implemented by the provincial administration in the field of maritime transportation and shelter facilities offered to the people travelling to the provincial capital of Alotau. Mr. Morris Ledimo, a successful businessman from Woodlark Island and manager of Mortplace Guest House in Madang, told the students that he came from nowhere; therefore, young people should not hesitate to move forward. After all, the idea people in and outside the country have of Milne Bay is one of “peace, hospitality, and industriousness”, according to Brother Andrew Simpson, Vice-President of Divine Word University, as he referred to his own experience first in Australia and now in Papua New Guinea. (CBC Communications 180812 – giorgiolicini@yahoo.com)